Amaro Lucano Artisanal Liqueurs

Chicago goes Italian; The Spirit of Italy comes to Chi

Saturday, October 03, 2015 Stella Quimby

The Spirit of Italy Featured Drinks
I recently attended the exclusive "The Spirit of Italy" dinner. I first wondered what this was? Why were we invited to an Italian dinner? The reason was to introduce Artisanal Italian liqueurs to Chicago. The goal was promoting the culture of premium Italian spirits which included seven of Italy's most historic and popular distilleries; Amaro Lucano, Cocchi, Luxardo, Distillerie Moccia, Distilleria Nardini, Pallini, Toschi and Distilleria Varnelli. These distilleries form "The Spirit of Italy" group.

Yummy appetizer's from event!
Promoting "The Spirit of Italy" totally worked since I never heard of these liquors and tried every one of them in a different drink. So this one-of-a-kind event took place at Chicago's Quartino, which by the way serves amazing Italian food! Definitely a must try if your even downtown. Every liqueur was paired with a food dish, thus making us feel super Italian that night! This spirited dinner consisted of 4 courses paired with 6 different cocktails and the dessert included a buffet tasting of all the liqueurs which included: Amaro Lucano, Sangue Morlacco, Cherry Luxardo, Amaro Nardini, Limoncello Pallini, Fragoli Toschi, and Amaro Dell'erborista Varnelli.

Zeppole!! Yum's 

The following are the dishes with their cocktail pairings:

* Salumi & Cheese paired with Un Lucano A Manhattan and Fragoli Spritz
* Gnocchi with Arugula pesto paired with Barnard
* Cavetelli Tomato, fresh basil & fresh ricotta paired with Morlacco Juliep
* Salmon with roasted grape tomatoes & oil cured olives paired with the Alchemist
* Farmhouse Chicken with lemon & herbs paired with Amalfi Mule
* Desserts included; Tiramisu, Zeppole (my fave) and Biscuits

The Spirits of Italy

Here are a few cocktail recipes for you all to try at home!! These liqueurs are a must have at your home liquor collection!

Fragoli Spritz (super light, great with salads and appetizers)
1.4 oz Fragoli Toschi
0.7 oz Soda Water
4 oz Prosecco Wine
Ice Cubes
Prepare directly in glass, fill with ice, add soda water, wine and Fragoli and serve!

Barnard (Great with a heavy pasta dish)
1 oz Amaro Nardini
2 1/2 oz Ginger Ale
Mint Leaves
Pour the Amaro directly into a highball glass filled with ice. Add ginger ale, stire and garnish with some mint leaves. 

Amalfi Mule (Best one of the Night)
2 oz Pallini Limoncello
1/2 oz Lemon Juice
1 Strawberry
4 Basil Leaves
2 oz Gosling's Ginger Beer
Muddle the strawberry and basil and add the remaining ingredients (minus the ginger beer). Shake well and strain into an ice filled glass. Top with Ginger beer and garnish with basil leaf. 

Best drink; The Amalfi Mule
Overall the Spirit of Italy dinner was a great night. All the distributors and even representatives of these liqueurs were in attendance and talking to everyone. We learned about Italian liqueurs, their culture and even felt as if we were part of the family. Well hope everyone check's out your local Binny's for these liqueurs and enjoy one of the cocktails above. As for myself, I am enjoying a certain mule at this moment.  Buona Notte!!!

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